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Purchase College: Our Strategic Plan 2010–2015

Print version (PDF) Preamble:

Purchase College, SUNY, is a unique institution in which the arts play a special role—where liberal education infuses the arts and the arts infuse our campus. Through this strategic plan we renew and expand our commitment to quality education that pairs conservatory and liberal arts programs in a distinctive manner.

We are a college at the crossroads—of the liberal arts and conservatory education; of affluent and aspiring communities; and of our dreams and the reality of declining state support for public education. These intersections present challenges as well as opportunities. The Purchase 2010–2015 Strategic Plan embraces the transformational potential of our position at these crossroads.

We strengthen our commitment to being a learning-centered institution through innovation, inclusion, and internationalization. We are committed to providing an environment that encourages creativity, diversity, individuality, and collegiality. We seek to nurture our students' talents and their civic, ethical, personal, and physical well-being by providing opportunities for engagement inside and outside the classroom. We strive to educate the whole student. We recognize our shared responsibility for our students' success.

In renewed pursuit of these goals, the Purchase 2010–2015 Strategic Plan has been crafted in alignment with the principles expressed in our mission, vision, and values: MISSION:

Purchase College, SUNY, offers a unique education that combines programs in the liberal arts with conservatory programs in the arts in ways that emphasize inquiry, mastery of skills, and creativity. Our graduates contribute to the arts, humanities, sciences, and society. VISION:

Purchase College will be recognized nationally and internationally as the leading public institution to pair conservatory programs in the arts with liberal arts programs. We will continue to create opportunities for transformative learning and training in a community where disciplines connect, intersect, and enhance one another. VALUES:

Purchase College celebrates individuality, diversity, and creativity in a community of educational excellence. Our 2010–2015 Strategic Plan points toward four interrelated directions as we move forward:

  • Toward the Learning-Centered Community: develop the practice of a learning-centered institution with high-impact pedagogies, including systematic assessment and purposeful use of the results of those assessments;
     
  • Toward Institutional Effectiveness: become a more effective and efficient organization, operating in a culture of transparency, collaboration, civility, and collegiality;
     
  • Toward a Sustainable Community: ensure fiscal, academic, and environmental sustainability;
     
  • Toward a Greater Purchase: enhance our connections within our community and beyond.
Direction 1: Toward the Learning-Centered Institution: Engagement, Connections, and Student Success

We reaffirm our commitment to educating the whole student, to the critical importance of curricular depth and breadth, and to our students' timely graduation.

To meet this commitment, Purchase College will:

  1. Implement a faculty hiring plan to enhance the quality of our programs, reduce the student-to-faculty ratio, increase the diversity of our faculty body, and deepen the connection of faculty to their students, to curricula and professional work, and to the College.
     
  2. Implement an approach to the arts that provides a rich, liberal education for arts students, supports the establishment of Bachelor of Arts degrees in the arts, facilitates access to arts and interdisciplinary courses for all our students, and takes advantage of the valuable educational resources of the Neuberger Museum of Art and Performing Arts Center while maintaining excellence in all our programs. We will refer to this approach as "Conservatory Plus."
     
  3. Support student learning and success by strengthening the connections between Student Affairs and Academic Affairs in order to provide high-impact learning activities, a culture of wellness, and innovative initiatives inside the classroom and beyond.
     
  4. Assess student learning and use those results to improve students' experiences inside and outside the classroom and to enhance student engagement and success, resulting in improved four-year graduation rates.
     
  5. Provide opportunities for faculty to engage in scholarly, professional, and artistic development and for administrators and staff to participate in training and development experiences to ensure high quality, consistency, and effectiveness in all that we do.
Direction 2: Toward Institutional Effectiveness: Focusing on Practices, Processes, and Governance

To operate effectively and efficiently, Purchase College must build an infrastructure that guarantees the quality of our practices, units, and governance.

To meet this commitment, Purchase College will:

  1. Foster an environment of civility, collaboration, and efficiency through a culture of communication and by streamlining and clarifying administrative policies.
     
  2. Review our administrative and governance structures to promote effective campus operations and collegial decision-making.
     
  3. Implement an assessment plan whose results are used in successful and on-going strategic planning and sustainable resource allocation.
     
  4. Establish an integrated marketing plan that tells the compelling Purchase story to potential students, their parents, and donors, as well as our community of faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends.
     
  5. Incorporate facilities and technology needs into every strategic decision to ensure that we create and maintain the physical environments that support our central mission of learning.
Direction 3: Toward the Sustainable Community: Fiscal, Academic, and Environmental Sustainability

Our future depends on smart and innovative planning—our ability to manage our resources and rethink our practices to guarantee fiscal, academic, and environmental sustainability.

To meet this commitment Purchase College will:

  1. Enhance procedures for planning that allocate resources to priority areas as effectively as possible in an uncertain financial landscape.
     
  2. Support the implementation of entrepreneurial and innovative ideas for generating new revenue streams, and leverage all existing resources to maximize our return on investment and generate cost savings.
     
  3. Develop and deploy a sustainable mix of academic programs.
     
  4. Continue to focus on growing our endowments.
     
  5. Expand our commitment to sustainable environmental practices while incorporating the concepts into our educational endeavors.
Direction 4: Toward the Greater Purchase: Connections from the Local to the Global

Purchase College shares the mission of the State University of New York, which is to fuel the engine of economic, cultural, and intellectual growth locally, nationally, and globally. We intend to fulfill this mission by creating strong connections with partners at home and abroad and by educating creative, entrepreneurial, and responsible students. We want to broaden the learning locus of our students from the campus to the world.

To meet this commitment Purchase College will:

  1. Teach students to appreciate the interconnectedness of contemporary global society and to assume ethical responsibility for their roles in it.
     
  2. Internationalize our curricula by incorporating enhanced study-abroad opportunities and multicultural experiences.
     
  3. Raise our reputation and increase our visibility by developing strategic partnerships and lifelong connections with alumni and external advocates.
     
  4. Contribute to the region's cultural and intellectual life by providing service-learning opportunities for our students and artistic and cultural access for our neighbors.
     
  5. Make our campus, with its Neuberger Museum of Art and Performing Arts Center, our neighboring communities, including New York City, and the world part of the "Greater Purchase": a location for learning across borders.
Conclusion

Purchase College: Our Strategic Plan 2010–2015 is designed to guide us as we strive to better fulfill our mission and achieve our vision through the values that we hold dear. The plan provides a broad framework for our transformation into a learning-centered, sustainable institution with deep connections throughout the world. This strategic plan is not an end in itself. Instead, it is an institutional map that will direct the development and implementation of unit plans, each dedicated to the improvement of our institution and the elevation of the education we provide, our reputation, and our contributions to our world.